Solving the Mystery of Rutgers’ Penalized Horse: Who Should be Saddled With Guilt?

On Wednesday, we brought you the sad news about longtime Rutgers police horse Lord Nelson, who passed away decades after being called for a penalty in a Rutgers-Army game in 1994. But Kevin MacConnell, the former Rutgers associate athletic director for marketing and communications, is "99 percent" sure Lord Nelson wasn’t the equine on the field that day. He says it was a horse from Medieval Times, the theme restaurant that includes jousting tournaments in Lyndhurst… Karyn Malinowski, a professor at the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences animal department, sticks by the story that it was Lord Nelson who was penalized that day. She’s the same person who purchased the horse for Rutgers in 1978 and who later owned him after he retired in 2000. "It was absolutely Lord Nelson," she said on Friday. "Because I remember seeing the news in The Star-Ledger the next day, that I was very mad at Coach [Doug] Graber’s statements because it wasn’t Lord Nelson’s fault. The rider, somebody asked him to go out on to the field. He didn’t just bolt out on to the field."

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Lord Nelson, a Rutgers Horse, Dies

Lord Nelson, the only horse to be penalized in a college football game, died. Rutgers University said Lord Nelson was 42. One of his duties during his 37-year Rutgers career was carrying the university’s Scarlet Knight mascot during football games. Against Army, in 1994, Lord Nelson was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct after he broke free and raced down the sideline at Giants Stadium.

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Lord Nelson, Award-winning Rutgers Horse, Passes Away at the Ripe Old Age of 42

Director of the Equine Science Center Karyn Malinowski gives Lord Nelson a hug.

Director of the Equine Science Center Karyn Malinowski gives Lord Nelson a hug.

Until his retirement in 2000, Lord Nelson served the university’s Department of Public Safety as a mounted patrol horse as well as helped carry the Scarlet Knight mascot across the field at Rutgers football games. The 42-year old American Quarter horse was purchased in 1978 by the Rutgers Equine Science Center (ESC). Following his retirement, Lord Nelson became the centerpiece of an interactive youth component called “Equine Science 4 Kids” on the ESC’s website. A tribute to his character, earlier this year Lord Nelson won the inaugural “Horse Personality of the Year” award at the Annual Breeders Awards luncheon, hosted by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. Read more at Rutgers Today.

Rutgers’ Lord Nelson, the Horse Once Flagged for a Penalty at Giants Stadium, Dies

Sad news from New Brunswick on Tuesday- Lord Nelson, a police horse who worked at Rutgers University and who later was ridden by the Scarlet Knight mascot at football games, passed away at age 42… Lord Nelson is also the answer to one of the more quirky pieces of trivia: He’s one of the only horses to be penalized during a college football game… Way back in October of 1994, Rutgers faced Army at Giants Stadium. After scoring a touchdown, Rutgers went up 16-14, but here’s what happened before the PAT, according to the New York Times: "Rutgers missed the extra point because of one of its mascots, a horse. Exuberant over what turned out to be the winning touchdown, the rider swept onto the field and rode down the sidelines. That cost the Scarlet Knights 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct, and the kicker, Eddie Duborg, had to try his conversion from 35 yards out. He missed."

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Rutgers University’s Famed Horse, Lord Nelson Dies at 42

World-renowned equine personality, professor and former mounted patrol horse, Lord Nelson, passed away on April 12 at Gales Way Farm in Wrightstown, N.J. Lord Nelson, who will be remembered as Rutgers University’s only equine professor emeritus, lived a distinguished life, full of adventure, up until the ripe age of 42… His personality is one that Karyn Malinowski, director of the Rutgers Equine Science Center and faculty member in the Department of Animal Sciences, says was "one-of-a-kind." She remembers one night working late in Bartlett Hall on the Cook campus and all of a sudden hearing a fast-paced gallop coming from the road. Upon looking out the window, she saw Lord Nelson, who remembered to "walk" on the sidewalk and not the street, going back to his stable on College Farm Road followed by a police officer, on foot, in hot pursuit. Apparently he wanted to end his shift early that night… Lord Nelson will also be remembered as the first, and only, horse to ever receive an official football penalty in a NCAA football game. In addition to his time with the student mounted patrol, Nelson also served as the horse that was ridden by the Scarlet Knight at Rutgers football games. During a close game against Army in 1994, Nelson broke onto the field and raced all the way down the sideline to the opposite end of Giants Stadium. Receiving a yellow flag for his "un-sportsHORSE-man like conduct," he almost cost Rutgers the game.

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